Did you know that search engines cannot see the images on your websites? Therefore, it is incredibly important to give your images a relevant file name and alt text*, in order to tell Google what your image portrays/is about.
While this hasn’t always been the case, nowadays, neglecting the images on your site by not optimising your alt text and image file names will mean that ranking for them is not a possibility. On-page SEO is now more important than ever before, so making sure your images are taken care of as well as the copy on your pages is necessary in making your website’s SEO the best it possibly can be.
To add to your visibility online, mention the image on your page in the page’s text too. This helps Google if you do so close to where the image is located on its particular page, and use keywords similar to the alt text or file name of the image. When relevant, it is also a good idea to add some descriptive titles and captions to your images, as Google also smiles on this.
A few things to remember:
1. Only use image file types of BMP, GIF, JPEG, PNG, WebP and SVG. These are the only file types Google will index.
2. Name you files appropriately! Don’t use the standard camera-default IMG1234 format, or just a keysmash of some kind. Add some keywords and make it informative.
3. Seems like a no-brainer – but match your image content to your webpage content. The more obscure the image, the higher the bounce rate when your viewers get to your site and realise the content has nothing to do with the image they were following to get there. Make your site as cohesive and coherent as possible by creating a flow of visual and text content.
It is more important than ever right now to prioritise your images on your website. Google recently removed the ‘View Image’ button when users click on images on Google Image Search. This means that users now have to follow the image to the actual webpage it came from to view it in full size, so take advantage of that drive in traffic and optimise your pages for their images too.
Having coherent and beautiful images may make the difference in taking your clicks to conversions using Google SEO.
*Alt text or alternate text is a description added to an image’s html tag on a web page to define it – this can be seen when a webpage cannot be displayed properly, or when the image is hovered over with your mouse.